Will Keane heads Latics closer to survival – Wigan Athletic 1 Burton Albion 1

Will Keane's header drew Latics level

Will Keane’s header drew Latics level

* Wigan Athletic had a hard-fought 1-1 draw against Burton Albion at the DW Stadium to edge closer to League One survival with two games remaining.

* The Brewers went ahead in the 15th minute from a superb curling Joe Powell free kick into the top corner of the net.

* Latics drew level on 37 minutes from Lee Evans’ corner which was powerfully headed home from Will Keane inside the six-yard box. Almost a replica of his goal against Shrewsbury in midweek.

* The hosts struggled with the visitors physicality throughout and they didn’t reach the heights of recent performances.

* Latics best chance of the second-half fell to defender George Johnston following a corner but he fired over the angle of post and crossbar from a good position in the box in the 93rd minute.

* Latics remain in 20th place and four points above the drop zone with two games remaining. Burton are in 17th place and now safe from relegation.

Leam Richardson was confirmed this week as Wigan Athletic’s permanent manager and he named an unchanged team for the visit of Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink’s Burton Albion.

Burton were undefeated away from home in 2021 and would provide a stiff test for Latics at the DW Stadium.

It was a scrappy opening period as both teams struggled for cohesion. Latics had an early scare on 10 minutes when Johnston’s back pass went beyond Jamie Jones but the goalkeeper recovered to concede a corner.

The visitors were ahead five minutes later as Powell curled a superb free kick from 20 yards into the top right corner.

Burton’s physicality was causing Latics problems as the visitors were winning most of the challenges but as the half progressed the hosts gradually got their passing game going.

Evans’ side footed strike from the angle of the box was well saved by Ben Garratt as Latics looked for the equaliser. 

The hosts were level on 37 minutes when Evans’ excellent delivery from a corner was met by Keane who headed powerfully home from inside the six-yard box.

Just before half time Tendayi Darikwa’s strike from just outside the box flashed narrowly wide of the right hand post.

The second half was a tense affair which was lacking in quality and with neither side creating many chances.  

Latics had to defend an aerial bombardment from a succession of long throws and corners as Burton attempted to use their strong physical presence, but the Latics defence held firm with Curtis Tilt impressive in the centre.

Jamie Proctor replaced Viv Solomon-Otabor on 82 minutes but Latics were unable to carve out clear-cut opportunities.

Until in the 93rd minute following a corner the ball fell to Johnston in the box but the Feyenoord loanee fired over the angle of post and crossbar and Latics had to settle for a point.

This was a gritty hard-fought point for Latics in their fight for survival. Burton have been on a tremendous run under Floyd Hasselbaink so it was not surprising that the game was tight.

The other results from the relegation threatened teams were generally favourable although disappointingly Rochdale equalised against Crewe in the 97th minute to keep their survival hopes alive. 

All eyes will now be on AFC Wimbledon versus Rochdale on Tuesday night before Latics travel to promoted Hull City and are at home to relegated Swindon Town in the final game of the season.

Player ratings courtesy of Whoscored.com

Player ratings courtesy of Whoscored.com

About ianhaspinall

Communications specialist, Wigan Athletic fan & blogger, interested in music, arts & culture.
This entry was posted in Burton Albion, Joe Powell, League One, Wigan Athletic, Will Keane and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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